June 28 – July 05 2020 /Week in History/

June 28 – July 05 2020 /Week in History/

June 29

1613 – In London, the “Globe” Theater burned down

The history of the Globe Theater began in 1599, when in London, buildings of  public theaters began to be built one after another. It was built from the materials left over from the dismantled building of the very first public London theater. The theater got its name from the statue of the mythological giant Atlant adorning its entrance, supporting the globe, belted with a ribbon with the inscription: “The whole world is a theater” (immortalized in one of the plays of William Shakespeare, a shareholder and leading playwright of the Globe troupe, led by the actor Richard Burbage).

The new theater quickly became one of the main cultural centers of England. On its stage, in addition to the works of Shakespeare, plays of other outstanding Renaissance playwrights were staged.

The Globe was reminiscent of a Roman amphitheater in shape, was fenced by a high wall and had no roof. The scene adjoined the back of the building. Above its deep part stood the upper stage – the “gallery”, which was used to depict the fortress wall or balcony. Here the ghost of Hamlet’s father appeared or there was a famous scene on the balcony in Romeo and Juliet. Even higher was the “house”, in the windows of which the actors were shown. The “Globe” auditorium accommodated from 1,200 to 3,000 spectators.

June 29, 1613 during the premiere of Shakespeare’s play “Henry VIII” in the theater, a fire occurred. A spark from a stage cannon shot hit the thatched roof above the deepest part of the stage. There were no casualties, but the building burned to the ground.

A year later, restored already from stone, the theater reopened its doors to the public.

London Globe Theater

London Globe Theater.

June 30

1934 – In Germany, a bloody action took place, which went down in history as the “Night of Long Knives”

“Night of the Long Knives” (German: Nacht der langen Messer) is a large-scale bloody massacre of Hitler and his entourage over objectionable party leaders in Germany, which occurred on June 30, 1934. In particular, during this operation, Hitler’s supporters destroyed prominent members of the National Socialist Party – the leadership of the assault squads (SA – Sturmabteilung), accused of “conspiracy against Germany.” The night of long knives became the final stage of the struggle for power within the Nazi ranks.

After Hitler became the head of the National Socialist Workers Party of Germany (NSDAP) in 1921, on his behalf, the Assault detachment (SA) was formed from among the most physically strong party members. In 1931, it was headed by Ernst Rem, who immediately rebuilt the SA into a clearer militarized structure and increased the number of “fighters” to 400 thousand people. And after the Nazis came to power in Germany in 1933, the number of SA reached 2 million people. They “brought” Hitler to power.

However, by the summer of 1934 there was a split in the NSDAP – Adolf Hitler faced serious opposition in the ranks of his party and, first of all, from Rem, who represented the left wing of the party, calling for a new revolution in the country. Among stormtroopers, an opinion about Hitler’s betrayal became more and more widespread, and Rem’s popularity grew. What could not but bother the Führer. The influence of Goering and Himmler (the leaders of the “new power” – the SS and Gestapo detachments), who joined forces to discredit Rem in the eyes of Hitler, accused him of conspiracy and the desire for a coup, also affected it. Moreover, Rem did not hide the fact that he wanted to put the Wehrmacht under his command …

Hitler declared the massacre a campaign for “decency” and “moral purity.” And as a result of the “Night of the Long Knives” – a sharp increase in the political role of the SS and the Gestapo, and the role of the SA units was practically reduced to zero. Their numbers declined sharply, and their functions became secondary (such as the protection of concentration camps). Hitler himself after the “Night of the Long Knives” finally took power into his own hands…

Adolf Hitler and Ernst Rem

Adolf Hitler and Ernst Rem.

July 01

1661 – Treaty of Cardis

On July 1, 1661, at the Cardis Manor (nowadays Kärde in Estonia) between Revel (now Tallinn) and Derpt (now Tartu), an extremely unfavorable for the Tsardom of Russia the Treaty of Eternal Peace with Sweden was signed .

It ended the five-year war of Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich with the Swedish kings Karl X Gustav and Karl XI, provoked by another enemy of Russia – the Polish-Lithuanian Empire (Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth). As a result of its loss, Moscow had to give up hopes of gaining access to the Baltic Sea and making serious territorial concessions.

Peace talks of the Russian delegation, led by boyar Ivan Prozorovsky, continued with the Swedes for more than 3 months.
As a result, Russia returned to Sweden all the previously conquered cities of the Baltic states (Kokenhausen, Derpt, Marienburg, Anzl, Neuhausen, Syrensk), “with everything that was taken in these cities”, and, in addition, had to leave 10 thousand barrels of rye and 5 thousand barrels of flour in these cities. The Russians got the right to keep trading yards in Stockholm, Riga, Revel and Narva, and the Swedes – in Moscow, Novgorod, Pskov and Pereyaslavl.

Russian ambassadors could freely pass through Swedish territory if they were heading to friendly peoples; Swedish ambassadors in Russia had the same rights. The prisoners were to be returned home; parties pledged to give each other defectors. This way Russia had to wait another half a century to reach the Baltic, until the Northern War of 1700-1721, won from the Swedes by the son of Tsar Alexei – Peter the Great.

Russian Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich.

Russian Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich.

July 2

1698 – Thomas Saveri received a patent for the world’s first steam engine

The first steam engine used in production was a “fire engine”, designed in 1698 by the British military engineer and inventor Thomas Savery (1650-1715). With the permission of King William III on July 2 of the same year, the scientist received a patent for his device.

The patent application read: “This new invention for raising water and obtaining movement for all types of production using the driving force of fire is of great importance for the drainage of mines, for water supply to cities and as a source of driving force for factories – those that cannot use the power of water or the work of the wind. ”

However, the invention was not very effective, since the heat of steam was lost each time during cooling of the container. In addition, the pump was quite dangerous in operation, because due to the high vapor pressure, the tanks and pipelines of the engine sometimes exploded.

Nevertheless, soon the steam engine of Saveri found quite wide application in industry: with its help they began to pump water from coal mines. The inventor jokingly called his brainchild “the miner’s friend”.

Steam engine

Steam engine Thomas Severi.

July 3

1916 – A trial was held on the case of the crash of the Titanic liner

The death of the Titanic became legendary and was one of the largest in the history of shipwrecks. At the time of its construction, it was the largest passenger liner in the world.

During the first voyage, on the night of April 14-15, 1912, the ship crashed and sank after 2 hours 40 minutes. Onboard there were 1316 passengers and 892 crew members, a total of 2208 people. Of these, only 704 survived.

July 3, 1916 in London, a trial was held in the case of the crash of the liner. As a result, the judges ruled that “the ship sank due to a collision with an iceberg caused by the excessive speed at which it was driven.”

The captain of the California steamer – Stanley Lord, who, according to experts, was six miles from the scene of the tragedy, was morally convicted. Condemned in the most terrible crime by the sea laws – refusal to help dying people, he wore a stain of shame until the end of his days.

Only after the death of the Lord, in 1962, it became clear that he was innocent. On the Titanic they saw the lights of another ship – the Norwegian ship Samson. Going home with a poaching catch, it did not reveal itself.

Sunken liner Titanic at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

Sunken liner Titanic at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.

July 4

1776 – United States Declaration of Independence Signed

On September 5, 1774, the First Continental Congress was convened in Philadelphia, which was attended by representatives of 12 American colonies (Georgia did not participate). Congress sent a message to the English king demanding the repeal of laws violating the interests of the colonies, and announced a boycott of English goods until the complete elimination of discriminatory acts.

However, the English parliament and King George III rejected congressional demands. It became clear that an armed conflict between both sides was inevitable. In 1775, the war began.

During the war, the Americans realized that they were not only defending their interests, but also fighting for freedom from English rule. This was clearly articulated in the Declaration of Independence, signed by the leaders of the colonies, and on July 4, 1776, it was adopted unanimously by the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia (Pennsylvania). For the first time in an official document, colonies were called the United States of America.

Of the 56 people who signed the Independence Declaration , five were captured by the British and shot like traitors. Nine people died from injuries sustained during the War of Independence. Many lost wives, children, and property. Ironically, the two authors of this document, who later became US presidents – John Adams and Thomas Jefferson – died on the same day July 4, 1826, exactly 50 years after the signing of the Declaration.

The original Declaration of Independence is considered a public asset in the United States and is stored in the National Archives in Washington in an inert gas-filled container made of bulletproof glass. In the daytime, the declaration is put on public display in the archive hall, at night the container is lowered into the sheltered basement.

Independence Day July 4 is considered the birthday of the United States as a free and independent country. Most Americans call this holiday simply by its date – “Fourth of July.”

United States Declaration of Independence

United States Declaration of Independence.

July 5

1881 – In Egypt, a unique ancient Egyptian tomb with burials of the Pharaohs was discovered

On July 5, 1881, Egyptologist Emil Brugsh from the Cairo Egyptian Museum made a sensational discovery. Under Luxor, in the cliffs of Deir al-Bahri, east of the famous Valley of the Kings, he found an underground burial chamber with dozens of sarcophagi with mummies of the pharaohs: Seti I, Amenhotep I, Thutmosis III, as well as the legendary conqueror Ramses II the Great.

Sarcophagi stood among utensils and jewels scattered across the floor. Apparently, thieves visited here shortly before Brugsch, but no one had ever come close to the “treasures”.

According to the discovered inscriptions, about 1110 BC. e. they were brought to this cache from tombs, the protection of which the authorities could no longer provide.

Using the affection of the ruler of Egypt, Emil Brugsh, with the help of two hundred Egyptian peasants, extracted the found mummies from the tomb. These findings were loaded onto a Cairo ship, and after 3 days the expedition arrived in the capital. Throughout the journey, the population escorted the steamship like a funeral hearse: men shot from their guns, saluting the dead pharaohs, and women, letting go of their hair, moaned like ancient professional mourners.

Emil Brugsch with his find enriched not only the Cairo Museum, but the whole world, providing modern people with the opportunity to see miraculously preserved remains of those who were at the zenith of their greatness and glory thousands of years ago.


Luxor is a city in Upper Egypt, on the east bank of the Nile, the administrative center of Luxor governorate with a population of more than half a million inhabitants.



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